23:53 GMT14 August 2020
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    A former employee at a Starbucks in Park Ridge, New Jersey, is accused of spitting into drinks ordered by police officers.

    According to a July 21 news release by Park Ridge Police, Kevin Trejo, 21, was arrested and charged Monday for allegedly spitting into the drinks of police officers while working at the coffee shop.

    "We got a tip that he had done this," Capt. Joseph Rampolla told NBC News. "That was enough for our detective bureau to get concerned,” he added, referencing the COVID-19 pandemic.

    Trejo has been charged with subjecting law enforcement officers to bodily fluids, tampering with a cup of coffee and creating a hazardous environment.

    According to Rampolla, it is unknown how many times Trejo allegedly spat into officers’ drinks.

    "We believe it happened more than once, but we can prove it happened at least once on May 25," he told NBC News.

    Rampolla also said that so far, no officers that visited the Park Ridge Starbucks location have fallen ill, but the police department is still notifying officers in surrounding jurisdictions who may have visited the store on or around May 25.

    Starbucks spokesperson Reggie Borges confirmed that Trejo has been fired.

    "This individual's behavior was reprehensible and not at all a reflection of how our employees treat our customers on a daily basis," Borges told NBC News. "We have apologized to the Park Ridge Police Department."

    “Everyone who comes into our stores should receive a positive experience and when that doesn't occur, we move quickly to address it and hold ourselves accountable. We will continue to support Park Ridge Police in support of their investigation and have a deep respect for the Park Ridge Police Department and the officers who help keep our partners and communities safe,” Borges added.

    Trejo’s first court appearance is scheduled for August 3.


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